Did you hear that?
Yes, of course I heard it. It was a little difficult to decipher, with the flurry of activity going on around me. One doctor pulling an oxygen mask over my face. Another frantically turning me on my side. The faint sounds of my mother panicking in the hallways. Everything was muffled. It made me think of things that don't belong.
I thought about my best friend from childhood. We used to sit on the bottom of the pool and "talk" to each other. It was all bubbles and muffled sounds, but we would pretend that we understood each other, carry on a conversation, and giggle wildly.
It was like that - but without the giggling. I was hearing everything that was going on. I was there. I was awake. But everything was underwater. Slow motion. I was observing it all. Studying everyone's reactions.
Of course I heard his heart stop. I'm sure I was the first to hear it, actually. I was the only one in the room that had been frantically searching for it - daily. The miscarriages guided my decision to buy a heart monitor and faithfully check to make sure it was still beating. I performed this task every day, for about six months. I had even done it the night before. It was beating faster than usual, but I thought nothing of it.
Honey, the baby has to come out now, okay? We are taking you into surgery, okay?
Bad things happen to people, I thought, as I stared at the ceiling. Bad things happen to people, I thought, as I struggled to remain still while they put a needle in my spine. I thought it again, as they hefted my immovable body onto the operating table, and one more time when they finally let my husband into the operating room and he sat down next to me.
And then I heard my child cry. The giant incision had sent my body into shock, and I was shaking uncontrollably. But I could hear him cry, and it wasn't muffled at all. My child was okay, and I was back. The chattering of my teeth, the conversation of the doctors putting me back together, the screaching of my baby - my head was above water and I was hearing it all.
Bad things happen to people - but not to me. Not that day.
This is clearly a departure from my usual posts. I am working on my writing chops, and following a prompt at the yeah write summer series. I meant to submit it, but my family is here from out of town, and I forgot. Oops.